Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
BECOMING A PATIENT
Functional medicine is a related discipline that uses a focused methodology to find the root causes of illness using a comprehensive history, thorough physical exam, and advanced diagnostic testing. Genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors all have a direct influence on long-term health and chronic health issues. Using a personalized approach the doctor and patient then collaboratively develop a treatment plan, working in concert with other professionals as needed. The end goal is to optimize health, reverse, and prevent disease using natural and holistic interventions.
There are a variety of ways to work with us at DEFINE Health. Our services are comprehensive. We have group programs as well as the ability to work 1-on-1 to truly develop a personalized program based on your biochemistry and goals. We always suggest a discovery call or visit so we can help you figure out what the best fit will be based on your needs and desires.
Your first appointment at DEFINE Health is our chance to really get to know you and your health-care needs. At your first appointment, we will do a deep dive into your health and history, perform a pertinent physical exam, provide nutritional guidance and create an individualized treatment plan focused on your health goals and condition, using multiple systems of medicine. The treatment plans are customized and include nutrition recommendations, supplements, medications if needed, mind-body strategies and exercise suggestions as examples. Please understand that this is an extensive visit, and time spent will depend on the complexity of your case.
No referral is required. We welcome anyone to our practice.
DEFINE Health serves as a consultative Functional Medicine practice. We currently do not provide primary care services. Our team of practitioners is led by Dr. Latib who is a Board Certified Physician who specializes in Functional Medicine and Integrative Health. Our current practice model is not structured for primary care.
Integrative and Functional medicine are a blend of both conventional medicine and alternative medicine and are meant to coexist with conventional treatment plans. Our team at DEFINE Health is led by Dr. Latib who is a Board-Certified Emergency Physician with additional training in Functional medicine. Her practice philosophy brings together the best of both worlds.
For your convenience, we have an online scheduling system. You will be provided with a link and log in details via email. For future reference, the link to our online scheduler can also be found on our website.
In order to reserve your new and follow up patient appointments, we require your credit card information on file. You will receive an email at the time that your appointment is confirmed. Appointment reminders are sent through emails and text messages. You will receive an email and/or text message reminders 48 hrs prior to your scheduled appointment time.
Once you schedule an initial appointment, we will send you an email with a link to your patient portal along with instructions on how to log in. Once logged in, please confirm your account information, then proceed to the “Questionnaires” tab on the right. Once you click, please select and fill out ALL forms and consents. Also please see the next tab below on how to submit your old medical records and labs.
We require that you submit your paperwork at least 72 business hours before your scheduled appointment. Please note that due to the extensive nature of history that is required for Functional Medicine Consultation, it is very important that you complete this paperwork well ahead of your initial consultation so we can make the most of our time together. Please note that our appointments start and end on time so any time taken to fill out paperwork upon arrival may cut into your appointment time.
As you begin your journey at DEFINE Health, we begin a relationship together that will take course over the months and/or years to come. Given the depth of the Functional Medicine Model, we will want to understand the complexity of who you are, your story, the triggers and precipitating factors that have impacted your health, and how this has led you to where you are today. The discovery process is part of us getting to know you, your history, your goals, and helps us formulate a treatment plan that is specifically tailored to you.
There are many facets to this initial discovery process. You will be asked to complete an initial set of questionnaires prior to your appointment. In addition, we ask that you also provide us with pertinent medical records that may be important for us to better understand your medical situation. In order to better help you understand what medical records are useful, we have outlined the following guideline:
- Most recent medical summary from your latest medical provider(s). This may include specialists you have seen for pertinent evaluations. (Please do not send a series of medical office notes. An overview/summary describing most recent findings would be very valuable.
- Recent lab results from the past 6 months
- Other medical test summaries from the past year
- Medical records summary from your provider that reflects a significant medical/surgical event that may have triggered a change in your status
- Summary of current (past 6 months) treatment regimens/therapies
- Genetic testing results
- Recent Functional Medicine test results (within the past one year)
- Mental health/psychiatric summary
Items that we ask that you DO NOT SEND:
- Notes from routine medical office visits
- Routine exam notes (this includes immunizations, routine physical exams, etc.)
- Lab results that are over a year old
- Diagnostic imaging films or disks
LABS AND SUPPLEMENTS
Most of the functional tests are completed by the client through easy test kits that are self-administered in the comfort of your own home. Depending on the types of tests required, most samples required are either saliva, stool, or urine. Your practitioner may order some blood tests depending on your case.
The results of your lab test(s) will be sent to your practitioner 2-4 weeks after you mail your specimens to the lab (functional medicine labs). Once all of your labs have been received, you will be notified to schedule a follow-up appointment to review your results. Your practitioner will go over your results with you in detail and recommend individualized treatment protocols based on your needs and goals.
At our online store you will find a wide array of products that we have hand-picked to address specific conditions and cover the nutrient bases you might not be getting even if you’re eating fresh, whole, real foods.Buying quality supplements from the right sources is so important because unlike pharmaceutical drugs, supplements are not regulated by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). The supplements we carry at DEFINE Health have strict criteria. All the manufacturers adhere to Good Manufacturing Practices standards.
When choosing supplements it is important to be careful of third party vendors, online, and especially big box retailers. We order directly from the manufacturers and guarantee our quality control regarding temperature and storage. Buying quality supplements is important, but buying them from the right source also becomes crucial to get the freshest, highest-potency nutrients.
The personalized supplement protocols created by our doctors at DEFINE Health consider the specific dosages and exact ingredients in the recommended supplement. We do not provide recommendations nor advise on any other specific blends or brands.
The efficacy of the protocols crafted by your practitioner are directly related to the quality of the supplements prescribed. When you shop with us, you can rest assured every product is guaranteed to be safe, effective, and fresh. Our customer support team is here to help you with anything you need, so please don’t hesitate to reach out if you need additional help.
Patients may begin to feel dramatically better within the first few months of treatment. However, individual responses may vary and are dependent on the chronicity and severity of your condition as well as your compliance to the program. Our team will lay out your personalized treatment map, but results will depend on your adherence to the program.
The initial Therapeutic Program usually takes 4-6 months for most cases. However, long-standing chronic conditions may require longer treatment duration. Many of our clients have multiple health goals. In order to produce sustainable changes, they are best accomplished in stages over time. Our most successful clients stick with our programs for at least 1 year. Once you have completed your Therapeutic Program, we will recommend a health Maintenance Program, with follow-up visits every 6-12 months
We recommend that you send a secure message through your patient portal. Emails/messages for simple straightforward questions requiring a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ reply, will not incur a charge. However, emails/messages that require changes to your existing plan, or new supplement recommendations– will incur a minimum charge of $35. For any situations requiring a conversation or complex decision-making, you will be asked to schedule an appointment to ensure you receive thorough and comprehensive care. Messages will be replied within 24 to 72 hours. Questions that require immediate attention, please contact your primary care physician or go to the nearest emergency room.
POLICIES AND PAYMENT
We spend a lot of time with our patients and therefore have a limited number of available appointment slots. Please be courteous and provide at least a 2-business day notice of rescheduling or cancellation. Late cancellations (less than 48 hours notice) will result in a 50% charge of your scheduled time. No Shows will result in a 100% charge of your scheduled time. This helps us ensure that we can meet the needs of all our patients who are waiting to get an appointment.
We do not accept insurance or Medicare. Some insurance carriers may cover medical services and laboratory tests performed by our clinicians. We can provide a detailed receipt for services performed for you to submit to your insurance carrier directly.
Payment is appreciated and due at the time of your visit. We do require a credit card to confirm your appointment. We accept cash and all major credit cards. We will also accept HSA and FSA account cards (issued by Visa, MC, DSC or AMX) as forms of payment. We have also partnered with Care Credit to alleviate the stress of the cost that one might incur during their journey with us. Depending on your eligibility, CareCredit can provide a credit line for 6 or 12 months with no interest.
We use conventional labs and advanced functional lab testing. Although we do not accept insurance for visits, we do send conventional blood work (if needed) to a lab that may be able to file with your insurance company. The costs of functional labs vary and will be discussed at the time of your visit. We can offer you a claim form to submit to your insurance company to attempt to get reimbursed for functional labs.
Our authorized laboratories are only able to sell test kits to licensed practitioners. Our doctors use specific lab tests from small lab companies that exclusively offer functional medicine tests. Larger national labs and local hospital based labs are not helpful for these types of highly specialized tests.
Our team of experienced professionals have learned over many years that the accuracy of your lab findings and the quality of the professionals performing the lab tests is the key to you uncovering what’s going on. Quality is not equal across all lab companies. Many times we see “normal” test results from regular lab companies and our lab tests find many “functional” problems. The lab companies used for DEFINE Health clients have the highest testing standards and the most consistent lab results year after year. These are not replacements for regular medical tests, these tests are only used to detect “functional” issues rather than medical problems and aren’t meant to diagnose or recommend protocols for diseases. We are attempting to detect problems with the functioning of organ systems prior to the onset of a disease.
Depending on the lab test, the cost is $250-$750 per lab kit and you can always start a program just by ordering a single test.